Sunday, August 05, 2018

Still Here Grinding Away at Poker and Life

Sometimes days and weeks seem to fly by. It's hard for me to believe that the last time I posted was before I left for Seattle and Phoenix -- a trip that seems way in the past to me.

On the Seattle part of the trip, I did have an opportunity to play poker one night at the Muckleshoot Casino in Auburn, Washington. I wish I had great stories from the visit, but it was actually a short and rather boring session. They had high hand jackpots every 15 or 30 minutes. I didn't win one. I wasn't getting much in the way of cards to stay in any hands beyond the flop until my final hand, when I flopped a flush. Unfortunately, a new guy at the table flopped a higher one. Meh. I decided things weren't going my way and didn't rebuy.

In Phoenix, I got in several sessions at Talking Stick Resort. The Arena Poker Room is actually a great place to play poker. If you are in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area, playing there is a must. One session was especially memorable. I had built my $200 buy-in to almost $1,000 when two hands quickly changed everything. In the first, my table had been selected for a $100 splash pot. After the flop, I was excited to see that I had flopped Broadway! A really weak player ahead of me helped to bloat the pot, but with two hearts on the flop, I didn't want anyone chasing a flush in this $3-300 spread limit game. I raised $300 and saw everyone fold, fold, fold until the action was on a woman who had seemed to play hyper aggressively and , frankly, pretty foolishly. She went in the tank for several minutes and then decided to call with about $200 behind. It turned out that she had the nut flush draw. As luck would have it, she hit her flush on the river. Dang it!

A few hands later, I looked down to see Q-Q (the Dreaded Pocket Queens?). I raised and got two callers. The flop: a beautiful K-Q-K! I don't remember the exact sequence of betting, but I, of course, was going to get it all in versus the one opponent who stayed in the hand with me. Unfortunately, he had about $500 behind. His hand: K-Q! So pretty quickly, almost all the excellent playing that I had done to get up about $800 was wasted.

In another session, I flopped a set of 4's. A wild player next to me pushed, and I of course called. He flipped over pocket 2's for the lower flopped set and was about to double me up when the turn brought his one-outer -- the final deuce to give him quads. We all waited for the river in hopes that I would hit quad 4's and hit the bad beat jackpot, but the dealer didn't put the final one-outer down for us.

In my final session, a wild player opened UTG for $26. I looked down to see The Dreaded Pocket Kings and raised to $70. He called. The flop was Queen high so I pushed and he called with Q-Jos. Yes -- he bet $26 UTG with Q-Jos and then called my pre-flop raise to $70 with that. Of course, you know what is coming. The turn was a Queen ...

I was hoping to get in a session with old online poker opponent PhillyB, but things just didn't work out. Unfortunately, I also didn't get out to Wild Horse Pass to give that poker room another try. I did, however, go to a shooting range with my brother (a former sheriff) and my nephew to, believe it or not, shoot a real gun for the first time. It was a blast!

The time since the trip has been consumed with work and with some other time off. I've played several poker sessions at Par-A-Dice Casino in East Peoria, IL, Harrah's Joliet (IL) and Horseshoe Hammond (IN). I seem to go in streaks where I win several times in a row and lose several times in a row. Last night at Harrah's Joliet, I ran a full house into rivered quads and ran a set into a bigger set. What can you do when the poker gods abuse you like that?

Looking toward the future ... I have now begun my 25th year at the school where I work. My tentative retirement now appears to be less than 21 months away.

In some exciting news, I am less than four weeks away from my first trip to Australia! I am going to visit my brother, thundering36, and should get there on his birthday. Of course, at least one session of poker at the Crown Casino in Melbourne will be on the agenda.

I hope you are enjoying your summer. This has certainly been a hot but relaxing one for me.

Thanks for stopping by!


Blogger 1Queens Up1 said...

Really bummed we didnt get together this time, although we both seemed to have a rough poker week too, ha.

Let me know next you head out this way and I wull make to grab at least one day off from work.

1:52 PM  
Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

Glad to hear you had a good trip (the bad beats not withstanding). Safe travels to Australia -- it's on my bucket list.

2:19 PM  
Blogger thundering36 said...

What? You're coming to visit me? What about Tony? A real friend would pay for his fare across the Pacific.

And I presume "at least one session of poker at the Crown Casino" means half of your trip? I shall check to see if there are any River Dragon machines before you arrive.

11:44 PM  
Blogger thundering36 said...

Oh, yeah... I meant across the Pacific and BACK. Australia is not ready for TBC permanently.

6:30 AM  
Blogger Lester said...

T36's idea about you bringing TBC along sounds like a wonderful idea! As a matter of fact I suspect if somebody put together a GO-FUND-ME page to pay for TBC's trip expenses the generosity shown by the poker community could be YUGE....

1:16 PM  
Blogger Pete P. Peters said...

If Tony agrees to move to Australia, I'll pay for his flight and first month's rent. It's the least I could do to give back to this great country of ours.

1:32 PM  
Blogger Mr Subliminal said...

Very nice. You'll love Melbourne.

8:12 PM  
Blogger lightning36 said...

The trip to Australia is really coming up fast. This is one of the busiest times at work for me, so the days fly by. AgSweep has already given me some long-distance travel tips to help me prepare. I've never been on a flight that long, so this will be interesting.

9:01 PM  
Blogger Ace said...

"I seem to go in streaks where I win several times in a row and lose several times in a row." This also happens to me.

It seems that we are rarely involved in hands where we suck out. They say that it all balances out in the end but the hands in this post were brutal.

Enjoy Australia! It's on my list and so is Japan.

6:14 AM  

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